sid: (Default)
[personal profile] sid
The Wisconsin Beer Lovers Festival in Glendale is coming up on June 14th. Here's a look at the 38 brewing companies lined up so far.

I'm feeling thirsty!
h4hahn: (Default)
[personal profile] h4hahn
I don’t know if anyone has read this Slate article from yesterday, critiquing craft beer for excessive hops. I just became aware of it today via a local blogger. In my opinion her response is both interesting and relevant. I don’t think you can blame Hops for turning folks off from craft beer. If you can’t find mildly hopped craft beer at you grocery store or watering hole, I don’t think you have your eyes open. And if anyone tries to cut back on my hops, it’s going to be a problem.

Slate: Against Hoppy Beer Link

DitchChicken Blog Post: Link

I admit I sorta love this article just for the meme.

ilanarama: me on a bike on the White Rim trail (biking)
[personal profile] ilanarama
In my prior post [personal profile] h4hahn recommended trying the darker Oskar Blues offerings. For our recent White Rim (Canyonlands NP) mtb trip (photos and a brief report are here for anyone who is interested) I brought along cans of their Old Chub Scotch Ale, which was quite good indeed, malty and kind of smoky. But even better was the Telluride Brewing Face Down Brown, which I'd also bought. I'd had their Bridal Veil Rye Pale Ale, which was not to my taste, but this stuff is stellar, super-malty and rich with lots of aroma and a very smooth hoppiness. A definite keeper.

Anyway, for those of you whose taste runs to darker beers and malt rather than hops, I recommend both of these!
youngraven: (Default)
[personal profile] youngraven
There's been a search on for the past few years to find a Scotch Ale reminiscent of MacEwan's, since that's nigh unto impossible to find anymore (it's no longer being exported/possibly no longer being brewed). There have been a few possibilities, and Iron Thistle by Rahr in Fort Worth, Texas is a serious contender. I believe it's a seasonal, so it'll not be round for ever itself, but I intend to enjoy it whenever I can find it. 

tasty cans

Apr. 5th, 2013 07:46 am
ilanarama: me in my raft (rafting)
[personal profile] ilanarama
So now that it's outdoors recreation season, my thoughts turn to Good Beer What Is Available In Cans. For my river trips and mtb camping, I go with New Belgium Fat Tire and Ska ESB as base "cheap" beers (okay, a six of Tecate also, which used to be our river trip standby, and we still like it for something lighter), along with Santa Fe Octoberfest (I'm going to try their Irish Red Ale and Java Stout this year) and Anderson Valley Barney Flats Oatmeal Stout for treats.

Any recommendations for delicious beer available in cans? As you can probably tell I tend to the darker/maltier rather than the hoppier side of things, though for you hops fans I can recommend Ska Modus Hoperandi.

Feel free to rhapsodize over your favorites in comments. I'm especially interested in cans available in Colorado.
evilawyer: young black-tailed prairie dog at SF Zoo (Default)
[personal profile] evilawyer
Pacific Coast Brewing Company's Holiday Tasting will happen on December 8, 2012 in Oakland. I went last year and tasted some might fine tasting beers paired with various foods. Great fun!
sid: (Sid turquoise)
[personal profile] sid
Great Lakes Brew Fest is this Saturday!

Here's the festival grounds map showing all the brewing companies who are participating. There's only like 100. I don't know how I'm possibly gonna fill five hours of sampling if there are only going to be @400 beers available!
sid: (Sid turquoise)
[personal profile] sid
The Wisconsin Beer Lovers Festival was held last Saturday at the Bayshore Town Center in Glendale. I went with my brother and his wife. It was hot and sunny (after rain on the drive up) and the all-Wisconsin brews were great. Every brewer was paired up with a restaurant or cheese maker, so there was plenty of free, delicious food as well. The fest lasted four hours and tickets bought online were about $48 including service fees.

Photo gallery

There were 33 brewers on hand. I'm not gonna try to list them all, but thanks to the spiffy program we were handed when we entered, I can list some of them, along with which beers I tasted and some of the food offerings:

Stevens Point Brewery, Stevens Point, Whole Hog Raspberry Saison
Stone Arch Brew House, Appleton, Houdini Honey Wheat
Northwoods Brewing, Eau Claire, Floppin Crappie
Sprecher Brewing Company, Milwaukee, Summer Pils
Hinterland Brewery, Green Bay, Saison Farmhouse Ale and Door County Cherry Wheat (with House Made Saison Bratwurst with whole grain mustard)
Port Huron Brewing Company, Wisconsin Dells, Alt Bier
Silver Creek Brewing Company, Cedarburg, Imperial Maibock
♥ ♥ Vintage Brewing Company, Madison, Rhine Heights, Jinja Ninja, Daytripper, Hibiscus Saison (Braised Chili Pork Belly in a honey/chipotle glaze with picked red onions, queso fresco and cilantro)
Ale Asylum, Madison, Bedlam (Mongolian Ginger Chicken stirfry)
Bull Falls Brewery, Wausau, Edelbock and Zwickel Bier
Fox River Brewing Company, Appleton, Caber Tossing Scottish Ale (Caerphilly Traditional cheese)
Minocqua Brewing Company, Minocqua, Scottish Ale (Pesto Shrimp with angel hair pasta)
Potosi Brewing Company, Potosi, Hefeweizen
The Grumpy Troll, Mount Horeb, Keller Brau and Dragon Ship Wit
Great Dane Pub & Brew Company, Fitchburg/Wausau, Midwestvleteren - Belgian Strong Ale (Bison chili)
O'so Brewing Company, Plover, Rusty Red Amber Ale
Delafield Brewhaus, Delafield, Fruhlingzeit Maibock
Milwaukee Brewing Company, Milwaukee, Louie's Demise
Titletown Brewing Company, Green Bay, Pullman Porter (Beer braised short rib with whipped carrot, smoked onion and black pepper mustard)
New Glarus Brewing Company, New Glarus, Totally Naked American Lager (pulled pork slider)
evilawyer: DI Lestrade drinking a beer (Lestrade with Beer  (hounds12copy))
[personal profile] evilawyer
Eel River Brewing Company's Earth First Double IPA is a refreshing change from my usual organic-IPA experience. It's very bold for an IPA, with a strong nutty taste in the front and a nice thick mouth feel. Good stuff. Would go well with a roast. Eel River's up in Humboldt County, and I never make it up that far, but I'd be interested in tasting in on tap to see if there's much difference between draft and bottle. In the meantime, if you see it in your local store, I can recommend giving it a shot.
fullygoldy: Animated Firefly-Simon's Diary (Best Day Ever)
[personal profile] fullygoldy

Our fair city just finished up the 2nd annual "Craft Beer Week."  I didn't get to participate as much as I wanted to, but I still managed a few events:

Last Friday (5/4) we tasted Left Hand Brewing's (CO) 400 lb Monkey IPA at Coopers Tavern.  We paired it with mussels steamed in the same ale.  Both were DELISH. I'm also a big fan of their Stranger Pale Ale, which I discovered last summer while visiting Greenville, SC.  This is a great irony that doesn't need elaboration at this juncture.

Sunday, 5/6, we returned to Coopers for the Samuel Smith's "tasting" except I don't think you can really call it a tasting event if you make people purchase a 20 oz bottle (Sam Smith's std size) to try it.  Luckily, our table of 4 chose 4 different things, so we did get to taste: Taddy Porter, Imperial Stout (I ordered this, it's my all time favorite beer even though I'm only in the mood for it once a year or so), Cherry Ale, and Strawberry Ale.  None of us are usually into fruity beers, but these two were great - sweet and tart without being too "chick-like."  Kinda in the Belgian lambic family.  We did get free tasting glasses, but still - shouldn't there have been stuff on tap? I didn't link to SS, because if you don't know already, there's really no help for you, yanno?

During the week, our fridge was stocked with New Belgium Blue Paddle (CO, yes, the Fat Tire people), Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA (CA, and my home-town brewery), Capitol Amber (WI), Abita Restoration Pale Ale (LA), and Founder's Porter (MI)-the label states "dark, rich, sexy" and they're not lyin'. Sometime during the week I also had a Founder's Cerise (cherry ale) which I absolutely loved.

Thursday 5/10 we were at our neighborhood beer pub, The Great Dane, and tasted Ale Asylum's (WI) Common Thread (brewed exclusively for Craft Beer Week) - a common ale that was served at most of the venues participating in the week's festivities.  We also had the Great Dane's Texas Speedbump IPA (a long-time fave that's served out of a beer engine and has the most luscious head evar), and the Terminal Gravity Belgian Quad.  The quad was deceptive - it's billed at 12% ABV, but wasn't that hot in the mouth - it was rich, deep and sweetly delicious.  Thank goodness I had someone to split the 7 oz snifter with.

Friday 5/11, we hit our gang's favorite dive, the Crystal Corner, where we imbibed Sprecher Amber (WI) and New Glarus Two Women (WI).  Two Women is billed as a Country Lager, and is the collaboration of the women who run New Glarus brewery and Weyermann Malting. It's a very nice session beer, which I've been drinking on Fridays since it was released.

Today, we went to a friend's retirement party, where we had our choice of Lake Louie Arena Ale (WI) and Tyranena's Rocky's Revenge (WI).  I love Tyranena, I love it's founder/brewer Rob beyond reason, but Rocky isn't for me (it's a bourbon barrel aged brown ale).  I tend to drink Bitter Woman IPA and Headless Man Amber Alt. If you haven't gathered by now, I'm a hop head, with a fair appreciation of deep chocolatey porters and stouts.  Just up the street, a great taproom was having a Bell's tasting party, and a few folk (including the honoree) walked over for a bit of a tasting, but I was too busy playing Bocce Ball to go ;)  Bell's is quite popular in these parts.

Any road, I had a GREAT beer week!  Looking at the list, I did more than I thought, but really, there were events I wanted to attend that just did not mesh with my schedule or energy level, and that made me (briefly) sad.  I'm so lucky to live in a place where I'm surrounded by fabulous brewed potables at all times - the week seems a bit redundant, but hey, it's all about really f'ing good beer!  And it didn't totally ruin my diet progress - just delayed it a bit.

damerell: (booze)
[personal profile] damerell
I couldn't resist posting a link to

In one of these, I've just cycled overnight to Brighton. In the other, it's about 7am on a mainline steam service. Guess what's for breakfast?
evilawyer: young black-tailed prairie dog at SF Zoo (Default)
[personal profile] evilawyer
Am now drinking a pint of Linden Street Brewing Company's (Oakland down by the Port, California) Burning Oak Black Lager. It is to go "yum".

A subtle malt flavor in the nose and the mouth and a hint of sweetness on first taste. It builds up to a bitter cacao flavor that's surprisingly refreshing for such a dark beer. And speaking of color, this stuff is truly black. You can't see through it.

Very, very delicious.

And I'm having this particular pint at Creek Monkey Tap House in Martinez, CA, but now I know where to go when I'm trying to kill an hour in Oakland.
evilawyer: DI Lestrade drinking a beer (Lestrade with Beer  (hounds12copy))
[personal profile] evilawyer
Besides the one around the corner from my office, Pacific Coast Brewing Company in Oakland's Old Town district (which is a kind of dodgy area but I've never run into any real trouble) is one of the last brewpubs in the SF Bay Area that I'm aware of that isn't trying to convert itself into a beer-bottling "buy it at the supermarket" microbrewery. And they make great, not-for-the-masses beer as a result.

I'm having their Emerald Ale. They only have it in the cask right now (I suspect they'll put it on tap for St. Patrick's Day) and it's beautiful as a result. Beautiful rooibos red color, velvety feel on the tongue, smooth on the tastebuds with a walnuty-malt finish. I like a highly hopped beer as much as the next hophead, but sometimes you've got to have something that lets you taste the malt. This Emerald Ale is the perfect beer for that kind ofbe beer-drinking mood.

Crossposted to [community profile] real_ale and my account.
evilawyer: DI Lestrade drinking a beer (Lestrade with Beer  (hounds12copy))
[personal profile] evilawyer
San Francisco Beer Week starts later this week, and Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing Company is going to be holding a Beer Clinic for women (because we all know those weird stories that have been showing up in the news about women not liking beer are totally, scandalously untrue) on Saturday, February 18th. I'm hoping to be able to go, but wanted to pass the word along to anyone out here in Northern and Central Coast California that this is on.

There is a calendar of S.F. Beer week events at

crossposted to [community profile] beer4breakfast and [community profile] real_ale
youngraven: (Default)
[personal profile] youngraven
I'd meant to make a post about this, but then time got away from me. This past November, I had cause to be up in Kansas City (my husband had training in Overland Park). Since we were in the neighbourhood, we did the Boulevard Brewery tour. It's a fantastic place to visit if you ever get the chance. I fell in love with the floor; I wanted to roll round on it. Seriously. It was lush. 

We sampled their wares, but as it usually goes when I'm in that part of the country, Schlafly's seasonal was the one to write home about. I've heard that people run hot and cold on Schlafly, but I've yet to sample anything on tap that wasn't spectacular.

As it so happened, one of my husband's favourite singer/songwriters, Jeffrey Gaines, was in town the same time we were. So we bought tickets and hied us hence to the Riot Room for the highlight of the week. I knew I wanted something from Schlafly, but my husband was feeling adventurous - so he asked for a flight of Southern Tier's Creme Brulee, and... well, it was strange. It did taste exactly of creme brulee, but we bought decided that this was a flavour that beer simply shouldn't have. XD

Schlafly's Double Pumpkin, on the other hand, was heavenly from start to finish. I think I made a Schlafly convert of him. I'm trying to sort out a jaunt up to St Louis in April, and the Schlafly Tap Room is where I plan to spend a goodly lot of my time. 
fullygoldy: Skeptical Sheppard animated (ORLY-John)
[personal profile] fullygoldy
Yesterday I was enjoying lunch with my DH at a local Belgian-style bistro (there are now at least 3 places in our town that serve Moules et Frites), when a four-top was seated next to us.
After a few moments, the older gentleman said to the group, "they serve artisnal beer here."
The younger gentleman asked, "what's that?"
"It's, it's, well, they make it from water that comes from really, you know, deep underground wells..."
evilawyer: young black-tailed prairie dog at SF Zoo (Default)
[personal profile] evilawyer

I went to a beer tasting in Oakland, CA yesterday and thought I would share some of my thoughts on the some of the beers that were tasted. My notes are at my account over here

Crossposting to [community profile] real_ale.

Happy Beer-Drinking Holidays!
evilawyer: young black-tailed prairie dog at SF Zoo (Default)
[personal profile] evilawyer
Hello. For anybody out there living in the SF Bay Area, I thought I'd pass along the news that BevMo is hosting a Holiday Beer Fest at Fort Mason Center this coming Saturday evening, November 19th.

I've gone two years running now and I'm going again this year. There have been some great beers and it's been fun.

The website, which include a list of participating breweries (although I've always found these lists to be a little iffy in terms of exactly who'll be there) is at
damerell: (booze)
[personal profile] damerell
Every year, Fuller, Smith and Turner do a Vintage Ale; it's always a strong beer, practically a barley wine, about 8.5%, but the ingredients are their pick of the year, so they vary from year to year. Amusingly, it has a best-before date, but says "Although we are obliged to state a best before date [...] will improve with age for many more years", which is pretty accurate.

They started in 1997, but we only found out about it in 2007; we buy two dozen each year, lay down [1] 20, open 2 from this year and 2 from each previous year [2], and save two for boozemergencies. However, it turns out the brewery shop stocks a lot of previous years, and we bought a chunk more bottles and made it retroactive for '06, '05, '04, '02. Some rascals have drunk all the '03, and I'd never seen any previous year except one bottle of '99 which we split in 2009.

Except last week, where I went in and found a whole stack of '00. "Oh", they say, "we found a bunch of them in a storeroom. We didn't know we had them". I came away with four because that's all the space I had in my luggage...

Anyway, the point of this rambling post is to say - I don't know what availability is like where you are (wherever you are, I guess mostly Leftpondia from the previous posts I've read here), and they're all worth a go, but I meant to write up the annual tasting one of these years to make recommendations. I didn't do this this year, but I can tell you the '06 and '07 were the best we opened, and they're not quite as pricey as earlier years; if the opportunity arises, snap them up. Sometimes people in the US sell them on ebay under the "collectible bottle" rule (which they're breaking, but who cares?)

[1] I crawl under my bed with the dust and spiders and put them where there's room. It's not like I have a cellar or anything. :-)

[2] Not all on the same day, obviously!
metawidget: A platypus looking pensive. (Default)
[personal profile] metawidget

I've had couple of interesting beers lately. Both are a little off the beaten path, and both are quite happy to occupy centre stage — dessert or tasting beers, definitely, or your one/first glass of the night.

Traquair Jacobite Ale
This Scotch ale has a beautiful bottle, and is labelled as a flavoured beer. Both Scotch ales and flavoured beers can sometimes hit me over the head in an uninteresting way, but this one, part of a Christmas gift from [profile] the_arachne was definitely ahead of the pack in both genres. It's a dark red beer with a small, middling-thick, persistent head. I tried it after a short time in the fridge (just shy of room temperature). The flavouring here was coriander — not exactly a non-beer flavouring spice, being an ingredient in some white beers and others — and it was nicely balanced with the sweet, malty Scotch ale taste, giving the beer an interesting bite. It is very tasty on its own, but I imagine it would go nicely with buttery cheese like Oka.
L'Aphrodisiaque (Dieu du Ciel!)
Don't let this beer's somewhat silly label dissuade you. L'Aphrodisiaque is a chocolate stout with a hint of vanilla. It has the usual tight, persistent head and is tasty at room temperature, like many stouts. It's got a nice stout-y flavour, with added bitter and cocoa flavours mirroring the natural stout snap, and a whiff of vanilla in the nose and at the back of the mouth. Again, the flavouring doesn't overwhelm the beer, and it tastes like they used good chocolate. This beer is definitely tasty for dessert. It might put you in the mood for good chocolate, but I think it's probably at its best poured into a couple of little glasses and enjoyed unaccompanied.
cross-posted to my journal